Thursday, May 12, 2022

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community Liturgy, Fifth Sunday after Easter - May 14, 2022,Presiders: Jill Striebinger, ARCWP; and Jerry Bires , Readers: Pat MacMillan and Beth Ponce ,Prayer Leaders: Mary Montavon and Suzanne Bires , Tech: Peg Bowen and Cheryl Brandi

 Zoom link for video - 4:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time


Meeting ID: 815 3407 5389

Passcode: 803326

(Note -- if you have a problem with the above link, open your ZOOM app and insert the Meeting ID number and Passcode)

Theme:  Love one another as I have loved you.

Jill S.

Mary Mother of Jesus is an inclusive Catholic Community where all are welcome to share Eucharist. As you hear the Word, you will be invited to share your insights. As an inclusive catholic community, we encourage all to read the prayers with us and to listen and/or join us in song.  Be sure you are muted unless you are a reader or prayer leader. Unmute to share in the reflections after the reading of the Gospel and mute when you finish.  Please have bread and wine or juice with you as we pray the Eucharistic Prayer. 

Opening Song: Love Large –

(video by Devan Horne and Mary Theresa Streck)

Jerry B.

Prayer:  Spirit Divine, we gather as community to remember the life of Jesus and honor him with the breaking of bread.  We renew ourselves to share our vision of the creation of a new earth.  We recognize that there is so much destruction and death all around us; we are surrounded by an unwillingness to accept differences, to truly listen to one another and to embrace the ministry of Jesus, which is the very foundation of Christianity.  Open our eyes and hearts to be reminded of statements Jesus spoke: Love of one another, love your enemies, share with the poor.  Together we will follow the teachings of Jesus and act upon them. 

Together we respond:   SO BE IT 

Jill S.

Transformation rite:

“Hymn of Remorse,” with lyrics by CAC teacher Brian McLaren:

We covered over your colorful earth with gray cement.
We cut down trees and stripped the soil wherever we went.
We scarred the hills for gold and coal,
Blind with greed inside our soul,
Our goal: to have complete control.

Transform us O Holy One. We be restored.

What of the lands of tribes and nations who lived here first?
Who took the best with broken treaties, and left the worst?
By whom were slaves bought, used, sold? Who valued humans less than gold? Who told us racist lies until our hearts went cold?

Transform us O Holy One. We be restored.

The noise of traffic is drowning out the songbird’s song.
Your voice within us is telling us that we’ve gone wrong.
You call us from our selfishness,
To be blessed—and to bless
To turn to you, to begin anew.

Transform us O Holy One. We be restored.

Pat MacMillan:

This is a reflection from the Irish poet John O'Donohue written in his book titled Anam Cara:


"It is a starting truth that how you see and what you see determines how and who you will be.  Explore your staples of vision: "To the fearful eye, all is threatening. To the judgmental eye, everything is closed in definite frames. To the resentful eye, everything is begrudged. To the indifferent eye, nothing calls or awakens. To the inferior eye, everyone else is greater, more beautiful, brilliant, and gifted than you. To the loving eye, everything is real. Love is the light in which we see light. If we could look at the world in a loving way, then the world would rise before us full of invitation, possibility and depth. To recognize how you see things can bring you self-knowledge and enable you to glimpse the treasures your life secretly holds."

These are the inspired words of the Irish poet John O'Donohue and the community affirms them by saying:  SO BE IT

 Psalm 23 by Bobby McFerrin

Beth Ponce:

Second Reading:  Reflection by Annie Selak.

In today’s Gospel Jesus tells his followers that others will know that they are his disciples if they have love for one another.  Being a disciple is not something that will be determined by social status, occupation, initiation ritual, clothing, or residence, but rather by the action of loving one another.  It sounds so simple:  love one another.  In a polarized world and a polarized church, it is becoming more and more difficult to follow this commandment, as simple as it is.  

Truly loving one another involves sacrifice.  It risks rejection or embarrassment, especially in a culture that prizes perfection.  Yet loving one another is the call of the gospel.  It is not optional, or a bonus that we can do if we master everything else.  Jesus tells us simply that it is the defining feature of discipleship.

These are the inspired words written by Annie Selak and the Community affirms them by saying:  SO BE IT

Celtic Alleluia

Jerry B.

Gospel: A reading from the Gospel of the disciple called John 

Chapter 13

Jesus spoke to his disciples: “I am with you for only a short time longer.  You will look high and low for me but just as I told the Jewish leaders I am now telling you – ‘where I go you are not able to come.’  Let me give you a new commandment:  Love one another.  In the same way I have loved you, you love one another.  This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples---when they see the love you have with each other.

These are the inspired words written by the disciple called John.

Celtic Alleluia

SHARED HOMILY led by Jill Striebinger

Homily starter 5/13/2022 – God at the Wall of Our Garden

To truly love another is to also know how to set a boundary and to be consistent in our application. Setting a boundary is especially important if you are a mother. What happens if you do not set consistent expectations for your children? In the greater world, setting a boundary may look like an act of aggression to someone who has overstepped our own boundaries; and because we live in a world where we aren’t conscious of the subtleties of borders, onlookers can become confused and judgmental in action without contemplation, which is another form of overstepping boundaries.

What overstepping boundaries looks like between countries in the physical space is war or aggression. In the nonphysical space it looks like alliances with a country that has committed unjustified war in the past with no accountability nor consequences to include admissions of guilt with restitution.

When a country wars, committing unspeakable violence, is when a judgement call by that very same violent country is needed. But because the energy required to war is so big it pulls one into blindness. This is why folk tales, learning stories or parables can be helpful. In the worship practices and folklore of India, we have Kali Goddess. She wars more fiercely than anyone, justified or not, until someone she cares about ends up dead at her feet. In the Christianity practiced today, Jesus is the one who dies. At the time of his death, the male apostles, ran fearful of their lives. The women apostles stayed till the end and to bury him as was the custom. This custom was a gender-based role that was seen as secondary, a lessor role in society, the work of women. It allowed them to be overlooked by those in powerful positions. We must live with healthy boundaries or one either has followers or is a servant, different sides of the same coin. God is on our margins. Standing in our God-given power and consistently working on our margins is God’s work.

Mary M.

We believe in the Holy One, a divine mystery
beyond all definition and rational understanding,
the heart of all that has ever existed,
that exists now, or that ever will exist.

We believe in Jesus, messenger of the Divine Word,
bringer of healing, heart of Divine compassion,
bright star in the firmament of the Holy One's
prophets, mystics, and saints.

We believe that We are called to follow Jesus
as a vehicle of divine love,
a source of wisdom and truth,
and an instrument of peace in the world.

We believe in the Spirit of the Holy One,
the life that is our innermost life,
the breath moving in our being,
the depth living in each of us.

We believe that the Divine kin-dom is here and now,
stretched out all around us for those
with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it,
and hands to make it happen.  Amen

Jerry B.

As we prepare for this sacred meal, we are aware of our call to serve.  Just as Jesus is anointed, so we are also anointed. Just as Jesus was always aware of the needs of the children, women, and men he met when he walked this earth, so we too are aware of those who walk with us and we bring to this table our prayers for the community. 

We bring to the table all those individuals, women, children, and men who live in an environment of hate and persecution yet continue to reach out to one another. May they be liberated from the tragedy of war and abuse.

We bring to the table the sick and dying.  We pray that the love of others will bring strength and comfort to their families, especially Jack Shugrue (Dotty’s brother) who transitioned into the total Presence of the Divine and Patrick Meehan (Bridget Mary’s brother) who has had surgery on his foot.

Please bring your concerns to our table (remember to unmute and then re-mute after you share). All members of our community are invited to share…

We pray for these and all unspoken intentions. Amen. 

Suzanne B.

(All lift your bread and wine)

Blessed are we through this sacred meal may we become a new creation as we respond to our call to follow the ministry of Jesus remembering all he has taught us.

Blessed be the Holy One.

God is within you, blessing the world through you.

Liturgy of the Eucharist

(Written by Jay Murnane)

Jill S.

With open hearts and hands let us pray our Eucharistic prayer in one voice:

Blessed are you, Holy One, source of all creation. Through your goodness you made this world and called us to be Your co-creators. We give thanks for the diversity and beauty of life around us and within us. 

We open our awareness to the goodness of all of creation and we remember our responsibility to serve. You invite us to build the earth into a community of love rooted in justice. You placed confidence in us, for you made us and you know that we are good.  

In joy and thanksgiving we join with all the faithful servants who have gone before us, and we sing:

Holy, Holy, Holy

Jerry B.

We thank you for Jesus, simple servant, lifting the lowly, revealing you as God-With-Us, and revealing us as one with you and all of creation.

He lived among us to show us who we are and challenged us to know you. He taught us the strength of compassionate love.  

Please extend your hands.

Come forth Divine Spirit and be with us at our Eucharistic Table: bless this bread and wine which reminds us of our call to be the body of Christ in the world.

Holy One, You call us to speak truth to power; we will do so.

Holy One, You call us to live the Gospel of healing and justice; we will do so.

Holy One, You call us to be Your presence in the world; we will do so.

Jill S.

On the night before Jesus died, He gathered for supper with the people closest to him. Like the least of household servants, he washed their feet, so that they would re-member him.

All lift their plates and pray the following:

When he returned to his place at the table, he lifted the bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread, and offered it to them saying: 

Take and eat. This is my very self.



All lift their cups and pray the following:

Then he took the cup of the covenant, spoke the grace, and offered it to them saying:

Take and drink.

Whenever you remember me like this,

I am among you.


Jerry B.

This is the bread of life and the cup of blessing.  Blessed are we who are called to the table.  We are the Body of Christ.

What we have heard with our ears, we will live with our lives.  As we share communion, we become Communion, both love’s nourishment and love’s challenge.

You are called, consecrated, and chosen to serve. 

Please receive Communion with the words “You are the face of God or I am the face of God.”


Communion Song: Quiet Place by The Many

Suzanne B. 

Holy One, we are willing to do everything Jesus did, to re-create the living presence of a love that does justice, of a compassion that heals and liberates, of a joy that generates hope, of a light that illumines people and confronts the darkness of every injustice and inequity.

We trust you to continue to share with us your own spirit, the spirit that animated Jesus, for it is through his life and teaching, all honor and glory is yours, O Holy One, forever and ever.


All: Amen.  

Mary M.

Let us pray as Jesus taught us: 

Holy One, you are within, around and among us.  
We celebrate your many names. 
Your wisdom come; your will be done, 
unfolding from the depths within us. 
Each day you give us all that we need. 
You remind us of our limits, and we let go. 
You support us in our power, and we act with courage. 
For you are the dwelling place within us, 
the empowerment around us, 
and the celebration among us,  
now and forever, Amen.  

Adapted by Miriam Therese Winter

         Share Introductions, special things we are grateful for and   announcements


Jill S.

Together we raise our hands in blessing as we pray:

May we continue to be the face of God to each other. May we call each other to extravagant generosity! May we walk with an awareness of our Call as companions on the journey, knowing we are not alone. May we, like Jesus, be a shining light and a blessing in our time! May we live to fullness the teaching of Jesus “Love one another” Amen.

Closing Song:  Sending forth with love and hope:   A Million Dreams (from The Greatest Showman) - One Voice Children's Choir


Please send MMOJ donations to:

St. Andrew United Church of Christ

6908 Beneva Road, Sarasota, FL  34238

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